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COHEN 

ZIONISM & 
JEWISH IDEALS 






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ZIONISM & JEWISH IDEALS, 



A Reply to Mr. Laurie Magnus. 

By ISRAEL COHEN, B.A. 



Published fji/ the Ei/r/lis/i Zioiihl Federafloii. 



PRICE 0^;E PENNY. 



L'. |•'l\slu■I^v Sqi'mm'.. !'',.('. 



D-S 
Zionism and Jewish Ideals. 



A REPFA^ TO MR. LAURIE MAGXUS.* 

By Israel Cohen, B.A. 

We are gathered here to-night for the purpose of considering 
and refuting a recent attack upon the Zionist movement. Some of my 
friends are doubtful about the wisdom of holding such a meeting ; they 
declare that we should not dissipate our energy in answering criticisms 
that have long ago been disposed of, but should reserve it for the 
positive work of advancing our cause. I maintain, however, that one of the 
most important methods of advancing our cause is to repel any assault to 
which it may be subjected, and thus to disseminate a rightful knowledge of 
our ideals and objects. The more plausible and eloquent the attack, the 
greater the need of a refutation, the wider the publicity it has gained the 
more imperative is our duty to achieve a similar publicity. Such, in short, 
are the circumstances that have prompted us to discuss the address on 
" Zionism and Jewish Ideals," recently given by Mr. Laurie Magnus, before 
the Jewish Young Men's Association in Birmingham. The presence of Mr. 
Magaus here to-night is at least a proof that we have in him a courteous 
opponent who is open to argument. I trust that by the time this meeting is 
over he will have found serious reason to reconsider his position, and if we 
cannot enjoy the spectacle of witnessing him make 

A Public Confession of Error and Repentance, 
I hope that we shall at least succeed in rescuing from delusion those over 
whom he has cast the spell of his charming sophistry. 

For thesakeof those who have not read, or who only remember dimly the 
main theses and contentions in the Birmingham address I think it well to pre- 
sent a summary of them before proceeding to discuss them, and my summary 
will be as objective as possible. Mr. Magnus proclaimed himself a Zionist. 
The Z ion at which he aimed he conceived as "universal and remote." He 
believed in " an ultimate Zion, not geographically fixed, nor dated in time, but 
gradually to be approached by the fulfilment of our mission in the countries in 
which we are dispersed." Hedescribed this belief as being in accordance with 
"traditional Jewish idealism," and he declared that "the political Zionists 
of recent years are travelling away from the Jewish idealism of all the 
ages." The object of these political Zionists, he said, is to afford "relief 
from local persecution," and he opposed it on the ground that Zion realised 
in our day would " deflower Judaism of its essence, and make the name of 
Jew an empty boast." He declared that if they founded their Zion in 
Mesopotamia, "the Restoration will be ex hypothesi, accomplished," and in 
such an event he asked: "What is there left for me to pray for? Why 
should I bring my children up as Jews ? " — and he predicted that " large 
numbers of educated Jews .... who deem their adhesion worth while 
for the sake of the mission of the race " would say " . . . . now Judaism 
is played out ; it is a spent force among the moral forces which make for 
progress : there is nothing left to keep me a Jew" Turning from the con- 
sideration of ideals to that of facts, he quoted the statement of Dr. Herzl 
ia his Jiidenstaat, published in 1896 : " I imagine that Governments 
will, either voluntarily or under pressure from the anti-Semites, pay 
certain attention to this scheme," and he asked : " Where has ' certain 
attention ' been paid, either voluntarily or uuder pressure, by the 

*Oelivered before the London Zionist League, on Sunday, December 5, 1909. 



2117251 



Governments of Europe to the Zionists?," and he supplied an answer by refer- 
ring to Turkey and Russia. With regard to Turkey, he quoted the reported 
utterances of a Jewish member of the Chamber of Deputies : " There is no 
chance for Zionism ; none of its programmes would be accepted by the 
Turkish Government," and further: "lam afraid of a great catastrophe if 
the suspicious of Jewish loyalty, engendered by Zionism, should grow 
stronger" — and Mr. Magnus declared that it is "in the highest degree 
imprudent .... to subject Jews to this suspicion." With regard to 
Russia, he said that there, too, no favourable attention had been accorded 
Zionism. He referred to the historic document published last July in the 
Jewish Chronicle, a Draft Bill to eliminate from Jewish legislation "super- 
fluous and obsolete oppressive regulations," which was considered by the 
Council of Russian Ministers in the autumn of 1 006, and submitted to the Tsar, 
who marked it for submission to the Duma ; and while welcoming this Bill, 
he hesitated to conjecture "how far the spread of Zionistic propaganda, 
engendering suspicion of Jewish loyalty, has played its part in the post- 
ponement of the reforms contemplated in 1906." Finally, he dealt with the 
question of Zionism and patriotism. Me admitted that " in the broadly 
tolerant England of to-day " Zionist societies do not "constitute a danger to 
the State," but bethought it "injudicious that a movement which touches 
acute danger in countries less settled than our own .... should 
derive support from British Jews. Jewish solidarity should help us to the 
wiser, the slower, and the more historical course of assisting Jews of other 
nations to win and maintain the same confidence as the Jews of this nation 
enjoy." And in his peroration he exhorted "the younger member^ of the 
community" to follow in the footsteps of Moses Montefiore, Francis 
Goldsmid, and Frederic Mocatta, so that "Jewish interests, when they arise, 
in questions of trade, labour, education, or finance, should still be 
represented by men who enjoy .... the fullest confidence of their 
fellow-citizens." 

These are the principal points and the salient passages in Mr. Magnus' 
address, and 1 have given them as much as possible in his own words. I shall 
deal with them seriatim, and I hope to prove to your satisfaction that his 
address is the product of 

A Deficient Knowledge of Jewish History 
and of an imperfect appreciation of the Jewish needs of to-day, and that the 
counsel he offers would make not for the advancement of Jewry but for its 
dissolution. We can divide his argument into three main sections : the 
first is concerned with ideals, the second with facts, and the 
third with our attitude to the future. I shall try to show that 
he misrepresents the traditional Jewish ideals fur which he professes shch 
fervid devotion, that his facts are either fiction or else they have been care- 
fully selected and sifted from a much larger array of facts that disprove his 
contentions, and that the attitude he asks us to take up towards Jewish 
interests is one that may secure the temporary comfort of a section, but can 
never contribute to the permanent welfare of collective Jewry. I shall 
also lay bare the inconsistencies of which he is guilty, the looseness with 
which he uses words of established meaning to suit his purpose, and the 
extent to which he allows his imagination to usurp the place that should be 
occupied by a reasoning mind. 

First, now, as to ideals. Mr. Magnus proclaims himself a Zionist. By 
what right does he assume that title and what does he mean by it ? 
He tells us that he believes in " an ultimate Zion, not geographically 
fixed, nor dated in time, but gradually to be approached by the fulfil- 
ment of our mission in the countries in which we are dispersed." Whence 
has he derived that doctrine, upon what authority is it based ? He 
tells us that it is derived from traditional Jewish idealism, but he offers no 



proof. His reticence is wise, for no proof of his claim can be offered. Read 
the pages of Jewish history, study the contents of the Jewish Prayer-Book, 
and you will find abundant and overwhelming evidence that the Zion for 
which our people hoped and yearned was the Zion whose synonym is 
Jerusalem, and whose geographical position is in Palestine. It was a Zion 
of geographical fixity, of physical foundations and spiritual splendour, for 
which they longed and prayed and suffered, and they believed in its restora- 
tion by a Messiah. That was why whenever the cry arose that the Messiah 
had come, a false alarm that sounded so often in the long dark night of the 
Middle Ages, the people were so ready to gird up their loins and take the 
pilgrim's staff for the journey to Jerusalem. From the days of Bar Kochba 
to the days of Sabbatai Zevi the history of Israel contains repeated record 
of these events, heralded with joy and mourned with grief, yet whose futile 
passing never shook the faith of the people in 

A Physicai. and Visible Zion. 
That was why there were so many pilgrimages to Jerusalem, of Rabbis, 
philosophers and poets. That was why Jehuda Halevi, whose whole life 
personified the longing of Israel for Zion, exclaimed in one of his poems : — 
" My heart is in the East and I am in the farthest West." And that was 
why, at an advanced age, he left his home in Spain to die in the Holy Land 
of his forefathers. You may call these individual instances and ask for 
more convincing evidence of the real nature of the ideals and aspirations of 
our people throughout the centuries of their dispersion. You will find that 
evidence in every page of the Hebrew Prayer-Book. " Gather our dispersed 
ones from among the nations, and assemble our scattered ones from the 
corners of the earth." . . . " And unto Jerusalem, Thy city, return Thou 
in mercy and dwell therein as Thou hast promised, and rebuild it speedily 
in our days, an everlasting structure." Such is the recurring refrain 
throughout our prayers, whether in home or synagogue, on Sabbaths and 
week-days, on feasts and fasts ; such has been the longing of catholic Israel 
in every age and in every clime down to the present day. It was a longing 
for the Restoration of Zion. And Mr, Magnus tells us that there is no fibre 
of his Jewish consciousness " that does not thrill to the prayer for the 
Restoration." Bub the Restoration as he conceives it is a Zion not 
geographically fixed. That is 

Not a Restoration : It is a Dislocation. 
His view is utterly at variance from the faith that has been treasured for 
nineteen centuries, the ideal that has been sanctified and strengthened by 
unbroken tradition. And yet he claims the authority of tradition for his 
own conception. The earliest exponent of that view was Samuel Holdheim, 
the father of Reform Judaism, who presided over the first Rabbinical Con- 
ference at Brunswick in 1844, and who repudiated the age-long faith in the 
coming of the Messiah, the restoration of Zion, and the in-gathering of our 
people in our ancestral land. That became one of the cardinal doctrines of 
Reform Judaism ; it was a bold revolt from tradition. Mr. Magnus accepts 
the view of Holdheim and consecrates it with the name of tradition. But it 
is not tradition : it is sedition. There is a line in Shakespeare that " the 
poet's pen . . . gives to airy nothing a local habitation and a name." Mr. 
Magnus would reverse the process : he would turn the local habitation and 
name of Zion into airy nothing. 

Why is Mr. ^lagnus opposed to the rebuilding of Zion, although there is 
no fibre of his Jewish consciousness " that does not thrill to the prayer for 
the Restoration " ? It is because he believes in 

The So-called Mission of Israel, 
because he holds the view that the Jews have been dispersed in order to 
disseminate the principles of righteousness, to advance the age of universal 



6 

peace, and that a return to Palestine would thwart the design of Providence. 
What authority is there in Scripture or tradition for this view? If Mr. 
Magnus were right, if our people did indeed hold the faith that they must 
remain for ever scattered in order to subserve a mission, we should expect 
proof of this in the prayer-book, the only authentic and irrefutable evidence 
of their beliefs, hopes and ideals. We should expect to find prayers that 
God should not " gather our dispersed ones from among the nations," that He 
should not rebuild Jerusalem "speedily in our days," but that He should 
postpone the building uuto the very end of time. And at the Seder Service 
on Passover night we ought to say, not " Next year in Jerusalem ! " but 
" Next century in Jerusalem ! " But what do we actually find ? The words 
are plain and unmistakable : " Because of our sins have we been exiled from 
our land." The dispersion was regarded as a punishment, and not as a 
blessing, and that is the view still held by the overwhelming mass of Jews. 
There are some who look upon dispersion as an end, a glorious end in itself, 
and Mr. Magnus is of their number. But this view, like that concerning the 
dislocated and evaporated Zion, only came into vogue at the beginning of 
the nineteenth century, thanks to the efforts of Holdheim and Geiger, and it 
is another of the distinguishing doctrines of their school of thought. It is 
not a century old ; it is held by a comparatively small section of our people, 
and yet Mr. Maffnus would represent it— or misrepresent it— as the ancient 
and uninterrupted tradition of all Israel. Do we then deny that the Jews 
have a mission, do we doubt that they have some purpose in the world ? We 
agree and we believe that it is their duty— as it is the duty of every civilised 
people, but more especially of the People of the Book — to spread the light of 
truth and the principles of justice : but we deny that it is necessary for 
them to remain in dispersion in order to fulfil this function. We declare 
that as a minority in every country of the world - in most of them despised, 
oppressed, and outraged, and in others only tolerated — it is impossible for them 
to act as teachers and examplars to mankind. Study the pages of mediseval 
history, examine the conditions at the present day, and you will find that it 
is a mere mockery to talk of the Jews serving as models of righteousness 
to the nations and governments with whom they have come into contact. 
They have always been too weak and too few ; they may have evoked 
individual admiration, but they have always been attacked by popular 
resentment. Think of the Inquisition, of the Crusaders, of the Blood 
Accusation, think of the expulsions from Spain, from England and France, 
and then say where and when those who most needed moral uplifting were 
influenced by 

Our Race ok Martyrs. 

Think of Russia and Roumania, where half of our people are living, or trying 
to live, at the present day, where they display an intenser piety than any of 
their brethren throughout the world, and where they suffer a more galling 
bondage than is to be found anywhere else on the face of the globe, and 
then say what moral influence they are exercising, or can exercise, over 
their inhuman oppressors. And finally think of the Jews in the Western 
lands where they are becoming slowly assimilated, not only in appearance, 
but in thought and ideals, to the surrounding nations, where they are 
exposed to countless forces of corrosion in their social, intellectual, and 
religious life, where they are being sapped of their Jewish individuality 
and weakened in their racial consciousness, where they are being slowly 
absorbed into their environment — so many more atoms to the general mass 
— and then say what mission they are subserving or can subserve? It iS 
because of these countless forces of destruction to which they are exposed 
that we say the crj'ing need of the Jewish people is national regeneration, 
and that we advocate the re-establishment of Jewish national life on Jewish 
national soil. Then, and only then, when we are able to develop our gifts 



and capacities free from bondage, whether of body or soul, in the inspiring 
land of the psalmists and prophets, will we be able to exert a mission 
worthy of the name and worthy of our splendid heritage. 

The movement that is trying by practical and political means to realise 
this object is known as Zionism, and it owes its present organisation and 
development to Dr. Herzl. But Mr. Magnus says that he was 

^ A Zionist bekoiie Dr. Herzl, 

" when Der J iidenstaat had still to do its work in altering the acceptance 
of the term Zionist." Does Mr. Magnus know that the terms Zionism and 
Zionist were first coined in 1886 by Dr. Nathan Birnbaum in his fortnightly 
paper, Selhst-Emancipatioii, and that the designation was used to distinguish 
the political movement for the national rehabilitation of the Jewish people 
from the activity of the Chovevei Zion? Never before 1886 was the term 
Zionism in use, and never since has it been used to mean anything else but 
the Jewish national movement, except on two occasions, first by the 
notorious Dr. Dowie of unholy memory, and secondly, by, Mr. Laurie Magnus. 
In his desperate attempt to Justify his usurpation of the title, he qualifies it 
by calling himself a pre-Raphaelite Zionist. There is only one pre- 
Raphaelite Zionist that I know of— the celebrated painter, Holman Hunt, 
who has appeared and spoken on many a Zionist platform. Mr. Magnus is 
not a pre-Raphaelite Zionist ; he is simply a post-Holdheimian Messianist. 
1 only wish that he were a Zionist— "would that all the people of the Lord 
were Zionists ! " But before he can reach that position he must at least 
understand the principles, ideals, and aims of our movement, and he must 
study its history. At present he seems to have a very imperfect apprecia- 
tion of the depth of the subject and of its splendid potentialities. 

Let us examine what he posits as facts, and we shall find that they are 
largely fiction. He says that Zionists claim "a monopoly of sympathy 
with foreign Jews who are suffering persecution for race or creed " and he 
indignantly rebukes them for it. Zionists have never made any such 
claim : they have always acknowledged the arduous work accomplished by 
the great philanthropic bodies for ameliorating the distress of our fellow- 
Jews in Eastern countries, but they maintain that philanthropy, however 
generous and unceasing, will never solve the Jewish question. Mr. Magnus 
says that Zionism is " relief from local persecution." It is nothing of the 
kind : it is a movement for the preservation and consolidation of Jewry by 
the establishment of a national centre in Palestine. But these things arc 
trifles compared with the language in which he speaks of " utilising the 
name Zion on the prospectus of a company formed for colonising some out- 
of-the-way soil where Jews can lay down their burden and abandon their 
privilege, and forget Jerusalem." " Out-of-the-way soil " — " forget 
Jerusalem " ! Does Mr. Magnus think we wish to found 

A Colony in Patagonia 
or in the Trans-Himalaya ? The countries specified in the Memorandum of 
the Jewish Colonial Trust are Palestine and the neighbouring lands, and not 
a penny of its funds has been spent on any enterprise outside this area. 
How we can colonise Palestine and forget Jerusalem is a conundrum 
that baffles me. But what seems to have obsessed our critic's imagination 
is that blessed word Mesopotamia. Well, we Zionists are not responsible 
for that. Mesopotamia may have figured very largely in the Press 
in recent months, but so far it has not come within the arena 
of the practical politics of Zionism. If Mr. Magnus had studied 
recent history, he would know that a new organisation, the Ito, was 
founded in 1905, and it is that body which is anxious to secure the colonisa- 
tion of Mesopotamia. But I realise very well that his objection to Zionism 
would hardly be diminished even if we confined our area of operations 
within the walls of the Holy City itself, for he speaks with a note of 



sarcasm about " the new Jerusalem in Asia," "Where then was the old Jeru- 
salem — in Africa or America ? But then Mr. Magnus does not like the new 
Jerusalem to be geographically fixed ; it would not harmonise with his 
volatile imagination. He has even a horror of such a thing ; he is seized 
with a regular panic at the prospect of Jerusalem being restored to its 
former splendour. For, says he, " Rob Israel of Zion, bring Zion again in 
our day . . . and you render nugatory all that we have won, you deflower 
Judaism of its essence, and make the name of Jew an empty boast ! " What 
a passion there is in these words ! But I must tear this passion to tatters, 
for it contains 

A Great and Monstrous Fallacy 

— nay, two fallacies. Fallacy number one is this : Mr. Magnus has told us 
that his Zion is " universal and remote," that it is " not geographically fixed 
nor dated in time, and that it must await Messianic fulfilment." How then 
can Zion in Palestine, or even in Mesopotamia, realised by Zionists in our 
day, rob him of his nebulous vision ? How can a localised and accessible 
Zion rob him of one that is " not geographically fixed," and which must be 
" gradually approached by the fulfilment of our mission " ? If he had not 
allowed his imagination such free play he would not have been plunged into 
such a dilemma. And now we come to fallacy number two : He says that if 
Zion were a fact the " mission of Israel will be accomplished," and he asks 
pathetically : " What is there left for me to pray for ? Why should I bring u p 
my children as Jews ? " This fallacy is really a double one, and it involves a 
self-contradiction. In several passages he told us that the fulfilment of our 
mission in dispersion is to lead gradually to a universal Zion. How then can 
a local Zion imply that the mission has been fulfilled? And now for the 
second part of fallacy number two : he asks : " What is there left for me to 
pray for ?" and he speaks of Judaism as being "played out," and of there 
being nothing left to keep anybody a Jew. One may read these passages a 
dozen times to discover a grain of reason, but one simply becomes more and 
more bewildered. Does Mr. Magnus seriously mean to imply that if a 
Jewish national centre were founded in the Holy Land, that even if the 
whole of Palestine were covered with a flourishing Jewish population 
developing on national lines, that that would deprive him of his prayers and 
that there would be nothing to keep educated Jews within the fold ? True 
our prayers re-echo with the yearning for the Restoration — r am glad he 
realises the fact — but, in the first place, our religious life— I suppose it is 
mainly about the religious life that he is anxious — is not confined to prayers 
for the Restoration, and secondly, we shall never claim, however far we may 
advance to the realisation of our ideal, that we have anticipated or 
supplanted Messianic fulfilment. 
Long after the Zionist Flag has been Raised Aloft in the Holy City 

Mr. Magnus may continue to observe Sabbaths and festivals and the Day of 
Atonement, he may continue to worship in the synagogue in Hebrew, 
and he may continue to spread the mission of Israel which will gradually 
lead to a Zion "not geographically fixed nor dated in time." Doubtless 
he will still continue to taunt us and to ask : " In their vaunted national 
ambition do they not forget to think imperially of Zion ? " But we do think 
imperially of Zion, we think of her as holding the same moral relation to the 
scattered Jewish settlements throughout the world that England does to her 
Colonies. It is our critic who thinks of Zion 

Not Imperially but Empyreally 

— as something akin to the empyrean, something refined beyond the elemental 
other. 

We now come to the practical side of the movement, to the region of 
facts. Mr. Magnus has tested Zionism and found it wanting on the 



ground that after thirteen years it has not received attention from the 
Governments of Europe. The only two Governments he mentions are Russia 
and Turkey, and in neither case can lie discover any evidence of sympathy 
for our cause. On the contrary, in both cases he says that our activity has 
had an injurious effect upon the Jewish situation. 1 shall deal with this 
presently, but first let me refresh your memories with a few facts that have 
been overlooked. Dr. Herzl had not an interview with the late Sultan, as 
Mr. Magnus says, but several interviews, and if nothing else was achieved 
but an assurance of the Sultan's sympathy, the fault was that of the Jewish 
people which had not backed Dr. Herzl with its material support. In 
November, 1898, he was publicly received at the head of a Zionist deputa- 
tion in Palestine by the German Emperor, who expressed his sympathy 
with the efforts for the revival of the Holy Land. In August, 1903, he had 
interviews with the Russian Premier, Count Witte, and with the Minister of 
the Interior, M. Plehve, and the latter promised, in a letter, which was 
published at the Sixth Congress, that if the Zionist movement confined its 
agitation to the creation of an independent State in Palestine, the Russian 
Government would give its moral and material support to Zionist negotia- 
tions at Constantinople. In January, 1904, he had interviews with the King 
of Italy and his Minister, Signer Tittoni, as well as with the Pope and 
Cardinal Merry del Val, all of whom expressed their approval of the Zionist 
idea. And need I remind you in this country of the greatest Government of 
all that has given favourable attention to our movement? Is it so long 
since Mr. Chamberlain, the Colonial Secretary, spontaneously offered- Dr. 
Herzl a tract of land in British East Africa for an autonomous settlement? 
And need I remind you that in the spring of 1903 a Zionist Commission, with 
the approval of the Egyptian Government, obtained by recommendation 
from the British Government, investigated the Sinai Peninsula with a view 
to founding a colony ? And all these things were achieved not in thirteen 
years, but within seven years, for the Zionist organisation was only founded 
in 1897 and Dr. Herzl died in 1904. 
Let us now consider 

The Case op Russia. 
Mr. Magnus referred to the Draft Bill for alleviating Jewish oppression, 
which was considered by the Council of Ministers in the autumn of 1906 and 
submitted to the Tsar, who marked it for submission to the Duma. The fate 
of that Bill is xinknown, and Mr. Magnus' comment is : " How far the spread 
of Zionistic propaganda, engendering suspicion of Jewish loyalty, has 
played its part in the postponement of the reforms contemplated in 1906, I 
verily hesitate to conjecture." That is a very grave and serious charge to 
make at a public meeting. Upon what facts is it based ? Not a shred of 
proof are we given, not a syllable of evidence. The implication is that 
Zionism is regarded by the Russian Government as a revolutionary and 
dangerous movement. If that were so would the Russian Zionists have 
been allowed to hold a Conference of nearly 600 delegates, at Minsk, in 
1902, with the express permission of Plehve ? Would Dr. Herzl have been 
received by Witte and Plehve, and given assurances of moral and material 
support ? You may say this was before 1906. Then allow me to remind you 
that on July 10th, 1908, Herr Wolffsohn, the President of the Zionist 
Organisation, was received in St. Petersburg by the Prime Minister, M. 
Stolypin, who, after a lengthy interview, expressed his fullest sympathy 
with the Zionist ideal, and declared that the Russian Government had no 
intention of placing any obstacles in the way of the Zionists in Russia so 
long as their activity was confined to the realisation of their formulated 
object — to create a publicly-recognised, legally-secured home for the Jewish 
people in Palestine. And need I add that the oilicial Zionist organs in 
Russia, Haolam and the Raszviet, are regularly published without inter- 
ference, and that the Central Executive of the Russian Zionists held a 



10 

conference only a few weeks ago in St. Petersburg, and issued a circular 
about their deliberations, which appeared in the Russian Press ? Perhaps 
Mr. Magnus will now withdraw his accusation, and find some other explana- 
tion for the shelving of the proposed reforms. If only he will bear in mind 
the general trend of Russian politics during the last few years, and the 
tightening of the forces of reaction, he will not need any special explanation 
of the fate of those reforms. If only he will reflect upon the fact that the 
Diet of Finland has been dissolved for the third time in the last four years 
by the Tsar, and that the autonomy which the Grand Duchy of Finland has 
enjoyed for a hundred years is now to be made null and void, he will not 
wonder at the opposition of the Russian autocracy to improving the Jewish 
position, and he will not seek in Zionistic propaganda a key 
to the workings of the autocrat's mind. He tells us that "the best 
hope for the Jews in Russia lies, not in inspiring them with 
ideas of political Zionism, but in assisting them to convert the rulers of 
Russia to just Government." What soothing counsel this is, but how is it 
to be carried out? How can the Jews of England, who have failed to prevent 
the passing of an Act in this country for the restriction of alien immigration, 
assist their persecuted brethren "to convert the rulers of Russia to just 
Government"? Remember the friendly understanding that is growing 
between the British Government and the Russian Government, despite the 
prevalence of reaction and injustice and the Tsar's fraternising with the 
plotters of pogroms, and then you will realise what prospect there is of con- 
verting the rulers of Russia to " just Government." " The way of redemption," 
says our critic, " lies along the road of moral endeavour." His words of con- 
solation fall like 

The Gentle Dew from Heaven, 

and they are just as effective for moving the minds of modern despots. For 
the last thirty years the road of moral endeavour has been followed by 
Western Jews in trying to compel the Roumanian Government to observe its 
pledges and grant the rights of citizenship to its Jewish subjects ; and whilst 
the Western Jews have plodded and are still plodding on the road of moral 
endeavour the Roumanian Jews have travelled on the road of emigration, 
and over 100,000 have been driven forth to seek a home across the ocean. 

And now for Turkey. Mr. Magnus quoted the opinion of a Jewish member 
of the Chamber of Deputies, who said that " there is no chance for Zionism," 
and who added : " I am afraid of a great catastrophe if the suspicions of Jewish 
loyalty, engendered by Zionism, should grow stronger." The opinion of the 
Jewish deputy was his own personal opinion and has no official weight ; his 
fear was simply his own subjective state of mind. Zionist activity which 
implies and acknowledges and insists upon the continued integrity of the 
Turkish Empire will not, and cannot, engender suspicion of Jewish loyalty. 
It is the malicious misrepresentation of Zionism which will engender such 
suspicion, and any catastrophe that may occur will be 

The Guilty Work op the Enemies of our Movement, 

and not the fault of its adherents. When we find that in the placid atmos- 
phere of this country a Jewish writer, who has all the means at his disposal 
for acquiring a correct idea of Zionism, is capable of misunderstanding it so 
seriously, we cannot be surprised that in the unsettled conditions of Turkey, 
where a keen battle between conflicting interests and ideas is still 
raging, there should be not only misunderstanding, but gross and men- 
dacious misrepresentation. As for the chances of Zionism, they are not 
dependent upon the political programme of the Government of to-day or of 
to-morrow ; tfiey are dependent upon the convictions and the determination 
of the whole Zionist body which will survive many changes of the Cabinet 
{\,t Constantinople. A people that has been kept alive by its national hope 



11 

during two thousand years ot dispersion, which has witnessed the rise and 
fall of empires and dynasties that have tried to crush it, is destined to 
realise its ideal in the end, and it will enjoy the security and dignity of its 
national life long after the episode of the Tui'kish Revolution has become a 
forgotten chapter in the history of tlie world. 
Those who have the faith and the hope that are 

Inspired by tiiic Jewish National Conscioi'sness 
are amazed when they are told that the work of the Jewish Board of 
Guardians in London is superior in importance to the endeavours to realise 
our national ideal. We wonder at the perverted outlook and cramped 
imagination of oar critics. We tell them that charity is good for the relief 
of poverty, but we remind them that greater than the problem of local 
poverty is the problem of universal dissolution. We point out to them that 
more than half of our people, six millions in number, are living in lauds of 
oppression and persecution, where their bodies are battered and their souls 
are stunted, where they are treated not as human beings but as pests, 
where they can find no hope of permanent relief either in a change of nature 
in their masters or in the unceasing flow of charity from their Western 
brethren, and whence they can find no refuge save in the lands of the West 
and the free which do not want them — or in the grave. We point out to 
them that the rest of our people, living in lands of emancipation, where they 
can enjoy all the rights of citizenship, are exposed to a thousand forces 
of disruption which are making increasing inroads into their social, religious, 
and intellectual life, where they are becoming victims, in growing numbers, oi 

Apostasy and Inter:marriage, 
where the economic conditions make their religious observances difficult if 
not impossible, where the intellectual conditions enfeeble their Jewish con- 
sciousness, and slowly, subtly rob them of their Jewish individuality, where 
freedom of social intercourse tends only to assimilation and absorption to drift 
and decay. And we say to them : there is only one of two alternatives. Either 
these forces of dissolution will continue or else there must be a great counter- 
acting movement for national regeneration. If Jewish ideals are only a name 
to you, if Judaism is only a theory, then you will let dissolution continue and 
it will proceed to its natural end. But if you desire the living realisation of 
those ideals, if you wish that the people which has sanctified the Holy Land 
with its glorious past, which has sufl'ered and survived for twenty centuries, 
shall have any future at all, then you will join j'our efforts to ours for the 
fulfilment of our national ideal. 



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